Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Hong Kong Trip (13th to 17th June 2008)

This is supposed to be my last holiday before my mega trip (if nothing goes wrong). There were a few exciting and memorable moments for me. For starters, this would be the first time since i reach adulthood to be travelling with my extended family. There were ten of us, my mum, four aunts, two uncles and my two younger cousins.
Our plane landed an hour off schedule due to bad weather. Hong Kong was experiencing its Monsoon season and our aircraft met with very bad turbulence. Our first landing attempt was aborted at the very last stage as i can see the buildings and landscape fairly big. There were probably at least another aborted landed cause i could feel the sudden thrust of the aircraft. There were these sudden drops and climb which make the ride seem like a roller coaster ride. Many of the passengers vomited but i guess i was kind of used to this sort of ride and i actually enjoy the ride. After we finally landed, we went to get our Octopus card, their version of the Ez-link card. It will cost you a HK$50 deposit and can be purchase at the airport.We boarded bus A21 that would take us to Mongkok and would offer us a different view of the city. There is a small area where you can leave your bags on the first floor but be sure to look after your bags.
My aunt booked this Dragon Hostel at the Mongkok area which is near Mongkok MTR exit D2. We had 2 rooms that are capable of taking 5 each. It cost about S$100 so it works out to be S$20 each.
It is very cramp though especially for my aunts who were so used to big hotel rooms but well this is about 10 times cheaper then your regular hotel. For young travellers, stay at the hostel and save your money for the shopping and eating. For those who cannot bear being cramp and like the comfort of a hotel then this is certainly not your place.
There is an attach bathroom to our rooms but there are some smaller rooms that do not have one and so there is the public toilet. Supplies of toilet paper are available at the front desk if you are asking and there are basic amenities such as a common hot waterboiler, fridge and washing machine.
We had our dinner at Sai Kung. Take the MTR Hang Hou and take MTR 101M. There are plenty of seafood restaurant there and well the most famous is Chuen Kee Seafood. Famous people like Hong Kong Chief Executive and many famous celebrities dine there. Its a bit further in there where we are the first night, Hung Kee. We paid about 1800 to 1900hk dollars for a 10+ 1 course seafood dinner. The 1 extra dish was added to entice us to dine there. Aparently Chuen Kee is cheaper although they did not tell us the after tax and the final prices so i am not completely sure which is more expensive.
Scallop with dong feng, its full of flavour
Chicken, wierd to say this in a seafood place but this is one of the best chicken i have ate.

Abalone

The 10 course includes abalone, lobster, scallop, chicken, fish, cockles, bamboo clam, crab, prawn, vegtable, fried rice and watermeleon for desert. The chicken is especially good along with the rest of the food. It definately test better and value for money compared to Singapore seafood restaurant. Since we are on the topic of seafood and Chuen Kee, I will share with you the highlight of my trip to Hong Kong. It happens to be my lunch at Chuen Kee on the last day with my uncle and aunt and one of my cousin. We had Alaska crab, fish, scallop and vegtable with rice and Woooo it was awesome. We asked for the smallest Alaska crab that they have and it cost us HK$280 per catie (600g). The whole meal cost us about HK$1700 but again its worth it cause it would have cost more in Singapore.

I like the Alsakan crab, its so easily cut apart by using scissors and its so full of meat. Easy to eat and a great enjoyment.

Meet up with my two friends there, there were some that i wanted to meet but did not have the opportunity one is Gary cause he was on a graduation trip in Japan and Brian still having his exams. Nevertheless, i did meet with Sinling and Jacqueline. Sinling is Singaporean if you were wondering and Jacqueline a Hong Konger. How did i meet Jacqueline, through the air cadets exchange programme when we were both in Canada about 6 years ago.
Hui Lau Shan, this shop serves very good deserts. Among the likes are the mango sago drink like those of your bubble tea and the mango mochi which is mochi but with mango filling inside. They cost about HK$22-25 for the drinks and HK$25 for 6 mochi.
Dim Sum breakfast at Cheers restaurant, this is also near Mongkok MTR i think its near exit B or C. Indulge into local culture and go for morning breakfast at one of the Dim Sum Restaurant or if you like to the tea cafes. Sidetracking a little, the tea cafes are actually quite to my liking as well but i didn't take any photos of the food but i feel its more expensive then our Singaporean Hawker Centres, a set meal in the tea cafe would cost u about S$6 to S$10.
A small portion of what we ate

Carrot cake like dim sum with a bit of chili

This is good, the filling is yam if i remember correctly

The filling for this is shark fin

Cheers would be a middle range Dim Sum buffet but still with my family of big eaters we busted their records. I heard the average bill of a table there would be around HK$150 but we hit HK$800 and the captain keep asking my aunt are we sure we want all the orders. Haha but anyway point to note some of the restaurant would charge you a higher rate if you pay after 11 but for Cheers they charge according to when you order so order before 11a.m. There are also some special discount for the afternoon tea.

Still on the topic of food, this is Yung Kee Restaurant near Lan Kwai Fang. This restaurant is very famous for its roast goose. The location is easily accessible its near Central MTR at wellington street. If you are dining in big groups, its advisable to put up a reservation. I had to wait an hour plus but luckily they got us a table at the VIP area at the 4th level. This is not your cheap restaurant if you are on a budget but the roast goose is a must try if you visit Hong Kong.

This is the famous roast goose, it cost around S$80. It is juicy inside and crispy outside.

Don't expect portions to be large

Next stop Central pier, this is where you take the star ferries and well for our case taking bus 15 from the interchange at the Pier to the Peak. Taking a bus will let you see a different sight that is different from the tram. You can take the tram on the way down. Yes, to the place for the best view of Hong Kong's night scenary. The best time to go is after a rain when the clouds have cleared. Sidetracking again, its amazing as i discover their Octopus card is much more versatile then our Ez-link card, we can pay for our ferries and even the tram ride from the peak by tapping our Octopus card... Man IDA or whatever Singapore agency in charge of this, they better step on the integration, its absolutely unacceptable that we claim to be advance in adopting technology yet this is not done.

This is what i get when i paid HK$20 to the observation deck whereby you can move more freely and have so called a better view. The only problem is there are plenty of people around so its hard to not get a shot with unwanted people inside. A tripod is essential here and i don't have it so the pictures are the best i can do with pump up ISO.

You know what i meant by there is alot of clutter if you want to take a photo for your memory sake maybe paying for the professionals (the right is worth it). Another place to take photos ironically is at the Burger King outlet.


Take an out air bus or tram and enjoy the scenaries at a different angle.

Ocean Park, a place for everyone. Go to Admiratly Station Exit B and take bus 629, it will cost you including a return trip HK$218. This park is huge so plan for having a day or at least start off early.
You have all sorts of ride here, theres something for everyone
Personal favourite, the cable car, the good thing about this cable car is there are four lanes and you don't have to wait and you get a fantastic view as see from below. The entrance tickets allows you unlimited rides on all rides so enjoy.

Take the outer lane for an excllent view of the coast

A key highlight of your HongKong trip is this show involving Dolphins and Seals.

Do check the timing and be there at least 15 mins earlier or risk not able to catch the show as it can be fully packed.

Well, i am not involve in most of the shopping but if you are looking for some cheap and maybe sometimes good deal there can be found at Ladies Market near Mongkok and Temple Street near Jordon MTR station. For even better deals go to Shenzhen it will cost you about HK$30 to take a train to the border and clear custom and take another MTR to lao jie to their wholesale and retail centres where the deals are really there. Security do come first and if you do visit these place beware of pickpockets so carry less and try not to be so obvious you are a tourist...

Another place that you might want to go is Causeway Bay and Granville Road. The later have two streets of factory outlets shop. Its near Tsim Sha Tsui Staton Exit B2. Do watch your timing and wallets.

Every city have its problems and culture, one which i found is the very backward way of the HongKong police of deploying man on the streets everywhere. There are at least 10 sightings of them at different location daily throughout my stay. Oh yes and interesting enough my lift lobby got seal off by the police cause there was some fighting or some activity that left some very minor blood stain. The plainclothes came as well so it was kinda exciting like watching HK drama show.

1 comment:

frostedtearss said...

BOOOO! HELLO DESMOND COUSIN!
yay hongkong was fun :DDD
I'M STILL WAITING FOR YOUR PICTURES OKAYYYYYYYYYYYY!
blah. :D

cya ;DD

(Vicki)